The Beauty of Righteousness

Do not let your adornment be merely outward – arranging the hair, wearing gold, or putting on fine apparel – rather let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God. – 1 Peter 3:3-4.

Heidi Klum who is one of the “supermodels” appearing in tonight’s Victoria’s Secret fashion show (2002) says that it is a beautiful tasteful presentation of the woman’s body. Others (Concerned Women for America, the National Organization for Women and the Parents Television Council) are calling the fashion show a “soft-core porn infomercial.”  

After many protests the Federal Communications Commission did investigate but finally ruled that the show did not violate decency standards. CBS has given the fashion show a TV-14 rating which according to that system would mean it is unsuitable viewing for children age 14 and under. A small number of CBS affiliate stations have chosen not to broadcast the show during prime time.

At least two issues are seen which every Christian needs to address in their lives. One is whether the show violates God’s decency standards? It is clear that Victoria’s Secret and CBS are promoting the outward physical beauty revealing as much as possible and doing so in a lewd, and lascivious as possible manner. Lewd being defined as sexually unchaste (in appearance) or lascivious and lascivious being defined in part as lustful. 

The three organizations mentioned above stated in a joint letter to CBS President Leslie Moonves, “What purpose does the special serve except to overly sexualize women and use this to bolster the networks’ demographics for young men?” At the very least I think we would agree that the special if watched by men would tend to tempt them to lust. In James 1:14 we are told, “But each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires and enticed. Then, when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, brings forth death.” In 1 John 2:15-16 we are told, “Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world – the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life – is not of the Father but is of the world.”

The second issue is that of true beauty. Yes, supermodels do have a physical outward beauty, but do they have an inner beauty as well? What a wonderful thing is the beauty of a gentle, quiet and godly spirit! The inner beauty of a godly woman is a beauty that will not fade because it is incorruptible and will increase in beauty as the outward body ages. As the writer of Proverbs says of the virtuous woman, “Charm is deceitful and beauty is passing, but a woman who fears the Lord, she shall be praised (Proverbs 31:30).”

(True beauty is not found in the outward appearances of a person but is found in their heart.)

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